Category: Math

Even and Odd Numbers

Thing 2 (my pre k kiddo) is about 40% of the way through Saxon Math 1.  (Thing 1 misses the cut off for kindergarten in Texas by 26 days, so he would be a pre k student, but he was ready to start kindergarten, so we did.  I can do that since we homeschool.)  Anyway, today’s math lesson was about identifying even numbers.  Thing 2 was introduced to even numbers at the math games play date we attended on Wednesday.  So this was the perfect opportunity to reinforce that introduction.

Even or Odd

Even and Odd Numbers with a Die

20 sided die
small whiteboard or piece of paper

1. To start we reviewed counting by 2’s.  As he said those numbers I wrote them down on the small whiteboard.

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2.  He then rolled the die.  I wrote them number down on the whiteboard and we talked about place value and which place we need to look at the determine whether the number was even or odd.

For the first 6-10 rolls I left the even numbers written on the whiteboard.  However, after that I erased the even numbers off the whiteboard and had him keep rolling.  I think he would have played for a while if it hadn’t been for the fact that he had to head to soccer.  He loved “winning.”  He thought that every time he got the correct answer he won.  I guess he was winning in his own way.

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How have you taught even and odd numbers?

Triple Digit Addition Using Dice

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, we are a little over half way through our school year.  Thus, we have hit a rut when it comes to our school work.  I will admit that a lot of the fun is gone and I have become focused on getting through the work, especially with the added pressure of getting ready to move.  However, after seeing the boys having so much fun at the math games play date we attended yesterday, I decided I needed to rededicate myself to making our school work more fun again.

Thing 1 (my 1st grader) has just started Singapore Math 2B.  The curriculum has thing 1 doing triple digit addition.  This is actually a review for him because I taught him triple digit addition when I was teaching him double-digit addition (a great thing about homeschooling).  So at 9 o’clock last night I came up with a way to practice addition without just sticking to the workbook.

triple digit addition using dice

Triple Digit Addition Using Dice

6 sided die
8 sided die
10 sided die (if you have 3 10 sided dice you could just use those)
small white board
dry erase marker

1.  Have student roll all three dice.  The 10 sided dice is the hundreds place, the 8 sided dice is the tens place, and the 6 sided dice is the ones place.  This creates your top number.  Write it down on your white board.

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2.  Repeat step one to get your second number.

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3.  Have you student add up the numbers.

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Thing 1 enjoyed this so much more than just doing his regular workbook page.  It also gave him much better practice than the workbook page would have because the problems were much more random and more difficult than what was in the workbook.  Most importantly is that Thing 1 got in lots of practice but didn’t complain nearly as much!  Score one for mom!

What are some fun ways you have practiced addition?

Exploring Energy with Rubber Bands

Who doesn’t love to shoot rubber bands?


Today we explored energy by using rubber bands.  This science activity was a huge hit with the kids.

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Exploring Energy with Rubber Bands

tape measure
rubber bands

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1. I started by introducing the two types of energy to the kids, potential energy and kinetic energy.  I shared the idea of potential energy, by having them squat down, because they have stored energy.  They then jumped as high as they could, demonstrating kinetic energy, or energy in motion.

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 2.  The kids then took turns shooting a rubber band.  We placed a ruler on a table.  Then hooked the rubber band to the front of the ruler.  The kids then pulled the rubber band back to either 10 cm, 15 cm, or 20 cm and let it launch.

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3. The kids then measured the distance that the rubber band flew.  They then recorded the distance on their chart.

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To take it further you can have the kids graph their distances.  You could also average the distances and have the kids graph it.

This turned out to be a big hit.  Once we got the kids started, they were able to take it over except for a little help shooting the rubber band.  They would shoot the rubber band, race the where it landed, measure the distance, and then record the distance on their chart.

It provided great number reading and writing practice for all of the kids and they had fun doing it.  What else could you ask for?


{Tricky Two} : Week 2

Thing 3 is still going strong with his desire to do school every day with his brothers.  Here is a quick look at some of the activities he did this week.

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PomPoms in the egg carton.
We worked on color this week by Thing 3’s choice.  First, he started off matching the pom pom colors to the colors painted at the bottom of the egg carton.  Then we moved to using tongs to do the same thing.  He was in love with the tongs.  I have no idea how many times he did, and re did this activity.

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Block color stacking.
I bought these blocks a couple of years ago and they have been awesome.  I started off initially just wanting him to build towers.  However, it turned into a color learning activity.  He would stack the blocks and I would say the color of the block, which he would them immediately repeat.  That soon turned into him choosing the blocks and telling me what color they were. He also would look through the pile of blocks and make matches.  We also had a few different shapes which we would talk about.  Toward the end of our 20 minute period he was able to name the colors and the shapes that he was putting in his towers.  The best part to him was when the towers would fall over.

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Pattern Blocks.
Thing 3 picked this activity out of the busy bag bucket that I have sitting in the corner of our classroom.  I wasn’t sure he would completely grasp the concept, but we worked through it anyway.  After I did a few examples for him, he surprised me and was able to create the pictures himself.

Thing 3 had another great week.  Besides the structured activities listed above, Thing 3 also made a snow globe with his brothers at a play date, played with some homemade slime, and enjoyed some outdoor fun at the park.

Just a peak at Thing 3’s week!

String Art

Welcome to a blast from the past.  Today I introduced the boys to the fun and simplicity of making string art.


Foam Board (cut into 10×10 inch square)
short straight pins
sheet of paper

1. Cut your piece of foam board into a 10 inch by 10 inch square.

2. Next, find something circular and trace a circle onto your sheet of paper.  I used a small plate.

3. Cut out the circle that you just traced.  Then fold the circle in half, four times.

4. Take the circle you just created and mark each of the folds.  Then place it onto your 10 x 10 piece of foam board and make a dots on the foam board where you have marked the folds.

5. Place on straight pin on one dot, until your circle is complete.

6. Using your string make a slip knot and place it on one of the pins and tighten the knot.

7. Now it is time to decide how many pins to skip as you move the string around the circle.  Taking the string, skip the desired number of pins and then from the inside of the circle, wrap the string around the desired pin in a circle and then move to the next pin.

This is an example of what your string art will look like if you skip 2 pins.

This is an example of what your string art will look like if you skip 4 pins.

All three boys took some time and tried to make their own string art, however, for some reason I never got a picture of Thing 2.


Not only was this activity a lot of fun it also was a way to tune their fine motor and counting skills.

Have you ever done any string art?


{Totally 3} : What has Thing 2 Been Up To?

So I am a little behind on sharing what Thing 2 has been up, so I thought I would do a quick catch up.

There was some fun with the letter Bb, which is a favorite letter of Thing 2.


Shape and number recognition practice.



Making a skeleton with Thing 1.

Jumping on the alphabet!

Some park fun!

{Krazy in Kindergarten} : Starting World Geography

This week I added world geography and science into Thing 1’s school week.  I thought that Thing 1 would be really excited about world geography since he loves U.S. Geography so much, boy was I wrong.  He was resistant to starting parts of our geography lesson this week.  I have no idea if it was because he was tired or if he was just trying to be a little difficult this week.  Despite his five year old issues, we did have a pretty good week.

This week we focused on learning the doubles addition facts.  I was really surprised how well he did considering he is not one to like to memorize anything.

We also focused more on the numbers 1-20 again this week.

This weeks sight words include: all, for and help.

He also read 3 more books this week:
*The Secret Code by Dana Meachen Rau
* Meet the Little Blue Engine that Could by Watty Piper
*The Little Blue Engine that Could and the Lost Hippo   by Watty Piper

Spelling words for the week are: up, fun, bug, sun, run, bus, dug, mud, us, rug, pup, yum, gun.

For science this week we discussed the food chain and the different roles that every living thing plays in the world.  We spent a lot of time looking at pictures on the internet of decomposers, herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores.  Several times this week while we were out and about, Thing 1 would love to show his knowledge about the food chain.  It made me feel good to know that he was actually absorbing some of the information.

World Geography
I was really excited to start world geography with Thing 1.  My plan is to follow the order of Expedition Earth, but add a lot of activities that are better suited for Thing 1. (This is why we homeschool.)

On Monday I introduced the map of the world that is included in the Expedition Earth curriculum.  I have no idea what happened, but that was it for him.  He kept telling me that it wasn’t the world.  He wanted nothing to do with the map.  He was done.  So we were done for the day with geography.

To be honest, on Tuesday I was a little worried what was going to happen when it came to geography.  So instead of introducing the map from the curriculum again, I brought out our globe and world map.  Geography went over much better.

We also made a cute book, that I have seen numerous places, to help visualize how exactly everything fits together.  The smallest circle started with our house.  The next smallest circle included our town.  In the next circle, Thing 1 drew a picture of Texas, which is not an easy task.  That was followed by the United States, North America, and then the world.  He thought the book was super cool, so cool in fact that after we were done with school for the day, he added to it.

The rest of the week, I did not try to use any flat maps when it came to discussing the continents, I only used our globe.  Thankfully our globe is an inflatable globe, so I can use dry erase markers on it and it not ruin the globe.

Thankfully, everything went much smoother and we were able to discuss most of what I had planned for the week.

Thing 1’s writing prompt this week was to tell me about his favorite book.  It really surprised me that he said his favorite book were about outer space since he is so in to trains.  Ultimately he wished that he could fly on a rocket and travel in space.

Just another week Experiencing Life with My Boys!



{Totally 3} : P is for Penguins

In case you didn’t know, Thing 2 loves penguins.  So I knew this week was going to be a big hit for Thing 2.

We practice counting 1-15 using our little penguins.  We also continued to work on locations such as top, bottom, left and right.

He also practiced writing the numbers 1 and 2.

Thing 2 did his letters maze, circle the letter, and putting the pieces together.

Thing 2 helped me locate the letters P and p in several books this week.  He has also started to notice letters on different signs and such as we are out and about.

Like I noticed last week Thing 2 does a much better job of knowing the sounds of the letters than the names of the letters.

Although we didn’t do as many hands on activities as we did last week, Thing 2 still had a great time learning since he was able to play with the penguins all week during school time.

{HERE} is a copy of the printables I made for the week.

How was your week?

{Krazy in Kindergarten} Finishing Up Last Week

Last week was our first week back home from vacation.  I had plans of Thing 1 doing school every day last week, but it didn’t happen.  He only completed one day of last weeks work, so we this week he finished up.

*Identifying and locating the missing numbers from the numbers 11-20.
*Grouping items into groups of 10.
*Adding 10 and another number.

*Doubles math facts.

He read four library books this week, including one which he received as his prize from the summer reading program at the “big” library.
*Ten Apples Up on Top by Dr. Seuss
*Puppy Mudge Takes a Bath by Cynthia Rylant
*Burn E the Fix It Bot by ??? (we seemed to have misplaced the book right now)
*Slam and Dunk Visit the Moon (or something like that, it seems to be misplaced also)

We also worked on the sight words: little, we, and do.

Things 1’s spelling words this week were: dot, jog, pod, Ron, sod, fog, lot, pop, rot, Tom.

We had some fun this week practicing our spelling words.  On Tuesday I had planned a shaving cream activity for Thing 2.  Well Thing 2 couldn’t be the only one with shaving cream, so both Thing 1 and Thing 3 played in the shaving cream too.  While they were playing I asked Thing 1 if he wanted to do his spelling words in the shaving cream for the day.  He loved it and did a great job spelling.  The only word that gave him any trouble this week was jog.

We are continuing to practice handwriting on a daily basis.  I am having to work on breaking some bad habit he obtained when he first learned to write in preschool. I will say that over the last several week I have seen great improvement in his handwriting.

This week his sentences related to our beach trip.

We had one last week of review of greetings, numbers and colors.

U.S. Geography:
We are still spending just a little bit of time each day learning about another state in the United States.  This weeks states were North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming and Nebraska.

We had a great week.  Thing 1 is really fallen into a school routine, which allowed me to focus on getting Thing 2 back into school this week.  Next week I will add in the rest of Thing 1’s curriculum to his week, since we are done with all of our big trips.

How was your week?


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